Page:A Compendium of the Theological Writings of Emanuel Swedenborg.djvu/113

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17
CREATION.

world. All things were created from the Lord by the sun of the spiritual world, but not by the sun of the natural world; for the latter is far below the former, and in a middle distance. The spiritual world is above and the natural world is beneath it; and the sun of the natural world was created to act as a medium or substitute. (D. L. W. n. 153.)

Spiritual things can proceed from no other source than love; and love can proceed from no other source than Jehovah God, who is love itself. The sun of the spiritual world therefore, from which all spiritual things issue as from their fountain, is pure love, proceeding from Jehovah God, who is in the midst of it. That sun itself is not God, but is from God, and is the sphere next about Him from Him. Through this sun the universe was created by Jehovah God. By the universe all the worlds [systems] in one complex are understood, which are as many as the stars in the expanse of our heaven. (Influx, n. 5.)

The centre and the expanse of nature are derived from the centre and expanse of life, and not the contrary. Above the angelic heaven there is a sun, which is pure love, of a fiery appearance like the sun of the world. From the heat proceeding from that sun angels and men derive will and love; and from its light, understanding and wisdom. All things derived from that sun are called spiritual; and all things proceeding from the world's sun are containants or receptacles of life, and are called natural. The expanse of the centre of life is called the spiritual world, which subsists from its sun; and the expanse of the centre of nature is called the natural world, which subsists from its sun. Now, as spaces and times cannot be predicated of love and wisdom, but instead of them states are predicated, it follows that the expanse around the sun of the angelic heaven is not an extense; and yet it is in the extense of the natural sun, and is with living subjects there according to reception; and reception is according to forms and states. The fire of the sun of the world is from the sun of the angelic heaven, which is not fire, but is the Divine love,—the nearest proceeding from God, who is in the midst of it. Love in its essence is spiritual fire; hence fire in the Word, or Holy Scripture, according to its spiritual sense, signifies love. This is the reason why priests, when officiating in the temple, pray that heavenly fire may fill the hearts of those who worship; by which they mean heavenly love. (T. C. R. n. 35.)

The sun of the natural world is pure fire,[1] and is therfore dead;

  1. In another place the author states, more definitely, that—"The sun of this world consists of created substances the activity of which produces fire." (T, C. R. n. 472.)